Dear Council Members of New Orleans:
I understand that the New Orleans Public Housing residents and affordable housing advocates are being locked out of the New Orleans City Council (public meeting) proceedings and being harassed by multiple 'law enforcement' agencies as they attempt to conduct a peaceful show of support for a halt to the immoral and untimely demolition of the 4 largest housing developments during an unprecedented housing crisis in this city.
Approximately 500 participants who attended an opening press conference preceding City Council's regularly scheduled session were met with a show of force from several law enforcement agencies. People have been peppered sprayed, locked out of the proceedings and 24 were arrested the other morning.
This is hard to hear, much less, understand. The week before Christmas? Or anytime, this is just unacceptable.
The people of Katrina - be it in N.O. or Mississippi, or where-ever, need our full attention, our full time, and the resources of the government - local, state, federal. They went through the most horrific event I can imagine, and they deserve our support emotionally, physically, spiritually and financially.
Most of all, they deserve the LOCAL representatives in the governmental systems there, where it all happened, to be putting the victims needs ahead of ANYONE ELSES. No business interests or governmental interests or other interests should proceed the interests of those who have been so demoralized and abused by nature and our own government. I can understand the Bush Administration continuing to be indifferent and speak words with no intention of following up on them, but to learn that the City Council of New Orleans actually is working against the people's needs and planning to undermine housing that is the key to returning home is beyond the comprehension of this American.
I am white, I am middleclass, I am a tax payer and a mom and a wife. I am an American. I am a Patriot. I love our country. I love New Orleans. We went there before our daughter was born and fell in love with the city. The amazing food. The birthplace of Jazz. The beautiful, warm and loving people. There was nothing more delightful than the people.
No political body ever designed should be voting against these people - for any reason. But after Katrina, to do anything but support and love and assist and uplift and provide and lay our lives down for them - to do anything but adore them - is incomprehensible.
It is time to stop doing things that are detrimental to their well being and stop the games and the short term wet blankets that are not solutions at all. It is time to bring the people in, let them sit at the table, and develop planning that includes THEIR NEEDS and THEIR WISHES.
To hear that they were pepper sprayed or, GOD FORBID, TAZZERED at a hearing that is directly involved with their lives and what's going to happen to them is OUTRAGEOUS and DISGUSTING. HOW DARE YOU ALLOW THIS!
You were all "elected" and "HIRED" to represent these people, not be above them or disconnected to them but to do what it is that THEY NEEED.
You are not protecting them or their homes. These public housing units need to be returned and restored to the people and more like them need to be built. BUT you must first hault the plans to destore these buildings.
Everything about this plan is grotesque and obscene. When I first heard about it on the radio, I thought I was listening to behavior in another country towards the peasants. Or even war criminals. Well, I guess, this is how it is, now, here in Amerika? We treat our own brothers and sisters like they are less than and don't deserve the bounty and the American Dream. How can this happen here? Who are you REALLY working for?? I know it is not the people of New Orleans. Investigations will have to begin to find out who and what is paying you off on the side to be making such disasterous decisions for the people.
Please reverse this decision and please, I implore you, please outlaw the use of tazzers and pepperspray in the people's house. When people want to participate in their government, they should be able to attend and speak on the subject at hand. Not be treated like animals.
Shame on you! Merry Christmas, Scrouges!
BY THE WAY, I tried for over a half an hour to locate Major Nagins email. Why is it something that is not provided on his website? If someone could please forward this to him, I would appreciate it. I never did find the address.
Thank you. God bless our once great country - by the looks of this behavior, I'm afraid we're screwed!
Please reverse the decision to level the low-income housing in the ninth ward. These people have been abused by nature, our government, the President, Congress, FEMA, and every other Tom, Dick and Harry.
We need to help them get back on their feet. They need AFFORDABLE housing and lots of it.
Do not destroy what was so precious about New Orleans... The people, the energy and the love.